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Because itzl and I travel a lot and the water quality varies so widely from town to town, I carry special beverages for him made with local water.  In a pinch, he can drink bottled water, but even that can vary from one part of the country to another.

Itzl has a delicate tummy.  Drinking water from unfamiliar sources can cause him diarrhea, which is unpleasant for both of us, especially if I have to stop every 10 - 20 minutes for him to satisfy his urge or clean up some oozings.

So I make drinks for him and bottle his own water for those trips.

Because apparently I'm an over-achiever, and Itzl doesn't mind experimenting with different beverages, I've come up with a few formulations that provide him with tasty, nutritious drinks that help keep up his energy and supplements his diet when he's off his feed from traveling.  Plus, he likes them and will drink them even when he's not feeling well.

In the hot summer (and Oklahoma can get brutally hot), these blends replenish his electrolytes and fluids and provides some nutrition when it's just too hot to eat, and in the winter (which is becoming increasingly colder, or at least with more snow...), they provide the extra energy he needs without filling his teeny tiny belly or making him fat.

It is very important that service animals be as healthy as possible because when they feel good, they work better.

So, these are the blends I make for Itzl to keep him healthy, happy, and engaged in meal times.  And they vary to keep me happy and engaged in making them.  Because there are no preservatives, I make these up fresh as needed.  They stay fresh for about 2 weeks when kept well chilled.  In the winter, I will warm them up for him, and in the summer he likes them chilled.  The non-fizzy blends, I will sometimes freeze in the container for the ice shaver, and shave them into doggy sno-cones as a special treat.

Rottweiler Dunkelbier  beef, buffalo, and free range turkey broth, malt, liquid vitamins, slightly fizzy mineral water, and a touch of molasses to make it darker.

Haveneser Draft  chicken broth, rabbit broth, liquid vitamins, malt, fizzy mineral water, garlic, and carrot juice.

Lap Dog Lager  buffalo and venison broth, liquid vitamins, fizzy mineral water, malt, molasses, garlic, ginger, and carrot juice.

Moon Doggy Mead  chicken broth, bony salmon broth, honey, garlic, fizzy mineral water, liquid vitamins, and pumpkin juice.  This one is Itzl's favorite.

Abyssinthian Amber  non-fizzy mineral water, tuna and salmon bony broth, liquid vitamins, carrot juice, and cat nip tea.

OciCatbernet  chicken broth, carrot and beet juice (for coloring), cat nip tea, fizzy mineral water, liquid vitamins, and a bony broth for extra calcium.

Black and Tan Boozehound Beer rabbit, ostrich, and elk broth, liquid vitamins, garlic, pumpkin juice, malt, molasses, and fizzy mineral water.

Howling Beef Ale  beef, beefalo, and venison broth, honey, malt, fizzy mineral water, garlic, ginger, liquid vitamins, beet and carrot juice.

Bubba Dog Brewski beef, chicken, and catfish broth, garlic, broccoli juice, cabbage juice, liquid vitamins, malt, molasses, fizzy mineral water.

Fat Cat Cream Ale duck broth, bony salmon broth, rabbit broth, honey, cream, liquid vitamins, fizzy mineral water, garlic, carrot juice, pumpkin juice.

Egyptian Mau Please  non-fizzy mineral water, liquid vitamins, rose hip tea, beet juice, carrot juice, blueberry juice, buffalo and elk broth, licorice tea, pumpkin juice.

Itzl doesn't like gooshy dog food, so he gets these beverages in his footed water dish beside his bowl of kibble.  Other dogs who've enjoyed Itzl's special beverages will drink them straight like Itzl does, but they also love them poured over and soaked into their kibbles.  Itzl would starve before he ate wet kibble!

The kibble he eats is a blend of Hill's Small Breed, Wysong's Archetype, Artemis Holistic Small Breed Fresh Mix, Blue Buffalo Small Breed, Solid Gold's Just a Wee Bit, and Amicus Small Breed.  He gets a whopping 1/4 cup a day of his kibble blend.

Of course, he gets a special bland blend for those days when his tummy is just not up to par:  chicken boiled with garlic, cooked rice, and small curd cottage cheese.

And he gets solid treats, too.  I make turkey jerky for him.  He adores extra sharp cheddar cheese sticks and Vienna chicken sausages.  I like them, too, because they work well as training treats.  I can pinch off teeny portions as rewards for a job well done and store the unused portions in a teeny insulated thermos.

Originally posted to Noddy and Itzl on Tue Mar 29, 2011 at 07:59 AM PDT.

Also republished by oo and Community Spotlight.

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